Paraguay seemed doomed as after the first half of their first game of Copa América play they were down to the Argentines, 2-0. However, a mad comeback due in part to Nelson Valdez’s golazo and Lucas Barrios’ equalizer helped Paraguay draw level with heavily favored Argentina.
The first Paraguay goal came with Argentina leading 2-0 and it was Nelson Valdez who delivered a laser from outside the box in the 60th minute. Valdez took a shot from about 22 yards out and it flew right over the glove of Sergio Romero and curled just enough to sneak under the crossbar to being Paraguay within one. Take a look at this strike.
[h/t: Actual Futbol]
Paraguay played their hearts out after receiving a boost of confidence from the Valdez goal, and their hard work would pay off. They had to endure close call after close call, but finally in the 90th minute Lucas Barrios, who came in as a substitute for Roque Santa Cruz in the 79th minute, was the one who leveled the game at two-all.
Argentina defended with all their might, but finally conceded the tying goal that came from a Paraguay free-kick from Néstor Ortigoza as he put up a long pass that found Paulo da Silva inside the box who headed the ball down, hoping it would locate a teammate, and it would land right at the feet of Lucas Barrios. Barrios then struck the ball on net and it would leave the Argentine keeper stuck in his place as he watched the ball dribble into the net for the equalizing tally.
This game started off slow for the Paraguayans, but had a fantastic finish and it leaves us with two questions after this game: 1) Can Paraguay ride this momentum going into their next two games and possibly advance into the knockout stages? And 2) How will Argentina recover mentally after a horrific collapse knowing they face their toughest opponent in Uruguay?